Thursday, September 12, 2019

Listen to my Bible Story?

Our choice of words is vital when we want to communicate about important subjects. An important reason of this is the connotations of words. For example, my mother took exception to my description of a fragrance: it reeks. It did reek, but that word implies that the fragrance was unpleasant.


Words change their meanings over time, and have different associations now than they had before. One of these is the word "story".
Credit: Clker clipart
Words change their meanings over the years. One example is in Genesis 1:28 KJV, where God commanded mankind and animals to replenish the earth. Back in 1611, that was understood to mean fill, but newer translations avoid replenish. In A. Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes story, "The Adventure of Black Peter", we read: "The outhouse was the simplest of dwellings, wooden-walled, shingle-roofed, one window beside the door and one on the farther side. Stanley Hopkins drew the key from his pocket and had stooped to the lock, when he paused with a look of attention and surprise upon his face." As Americans can probably see, an outhouse is more aptly named than the American, uh, relief station.

Our focus is the word story. It has several meanings, including a valid historical account, but it can also mean fictions that cowboys tell while riding the trail back to Dodge. I was told a story (as in, "We want to tell you our experience") about two American sisters visiting another country. The tour guide presented something rather fanciful, and one sister said to the other, "That's a story!" Problem was, the guide had just stopped talking and many people heard the remark.

It has reached a point now that when we tell Bible stories such as Creation, the Fall, the Flood, the Resurrection, and others, people tend to think of them as cute and fun, not as important historical events. I'll allow that it's a mite frustrating at times to avoid referring to the story of Jesus changing water into wine because of the positive use of the word story. We need to do a rethink, and find valid substitutes so people — especially children — know that these are not simple entertainment when we are doing serious apologetics. Fortunately, the article linked below gives us a few options.
I grew up with Bible “stories.” I heard them in Sunday School and youth programs. I read books about Bible “stories.” I was taught about Bible “stories” for years and years. People have compared Bible stories with other stories and fictional movies like the Matrix, Lord of the Rings, Aesop’s Fables, or Star Wars. I even talked about Bible “stories” when teaching in the past.

But all that changed.

One day I made a comment about the evolutionary “story.” I had a man come up to me, and he was clearly not happy. He was very upset that I had called evolution a “story,” because to him, it wasn’t a “story” but the “truth.” He was okay with me calling biblical accounts “stories,” because, as he put it, ”the Bible was full of myths and fictional accounts so they could rightly be called stories.” But how dare I call evolution “a story” in his view.
To finish reading, click on "What’s Wrong with the Word Story?" And please get rid of those dreadful bathtub-style cutesie Noah's Ark things. Don't you want the kids to take the Flood and God's Judgment seriously?

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Science and the Depravity of Man

It is interesting and sometimes fun to identify ways in which scientists have discovered things that were in the Bible long before. Yes, we know, the Bible is not a science textbook. When scientific items are mentioned, however, it is always correct. It seems that scientists are learning about human depravity.


Another place where secular science inadvertently supports the Bible is the depravity of man. They may begin to realize that materialism cannot produce moraltiy.
Credit: Freeimages / Cyan Li
God's Word tells us in Jeremiah 17:9 that the heart of man is (depending on the translation) desperately sick, wicked corrupt, incurable. Our righteousness is repulsive to God (Isaiah 64:6, Psalm 10:4, Ephesians 2:1-5). We may have the notion that we are good people and God looks on us fondly, bragging to the angels about how wonderful we are, but that is the opposite of the truth. Our hearts are deceitful and corrupt, and we think we are doing good things for the right reasons, but that's not necessarily the case. Sure, sometimes people will do great things, but that is because God has placed knowledge of himself in our hearts (Romans 2:15), even though people try to suppress knowledge of God (Romans 1:18).

A major tenet of several denominations is often called the total depravity of man. That name is a mite misleading because some folks may take it to mean that nobody does anything good, ever, but Jesus shows in Luke 11:11-13 that we are capable of some good. But we are likely to do something rotten. That's why we have jails and such.

There are people who claim that they do not need the Bible to give them morality, that they have it in themselves — such a claim supports the Bible. Others say that they get their morality from evolution instead of the Creator. Survival of the fittest? That justifies all sorts of wickedness, including lying, cheating, stealing, even murder. If those things help someone to survive, why not do them? Indeed, atheism, evolutionism, and materialism cannot account for morality; if someone is helping himself survive better, the materialist cannot be consistent in his or her worldview by raising objections to being on the receiving end.

Since secularists deny God, they attempt to alleviate human problems with social programs, psychology. Their false salvation fails almost from the onset, and cannot replace the real thing. Some researchers have confirmed what God has told us all along about human nature. They conducted some rather interesting studies.
Science reveals that people are just like what the Bible says they are: image-bearers of their Creator, yet fallen into sin.

If evolution is true, people would be incapable of apprehending objective reality or agreeing on immutable moral standards. They would be selfish and concerned only with survival. If the Bible is true, by contrast, people would be exceptionally noble above the animals, would have an innate sense of right and wrong, and yet would have a bent toward sin that could be overcome by trust and obedience in their Maker (in this life, at least partially). Evaluate the likely correct view, considering these recent empirical observations.
To read the rest, click on "Science Confirms Biblical Human Nature". A short article fits this subject well, "Psychologist Confirms Depravity of Man". Finally, "Secular Materialism vs Morality", which has a satirical piece by David F. Coppedge on cannibal rights in the future.



Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Virtue Signaling and Denying Genesis

A prideful trend in religious circles is virtue signaling. People want attention for being trendy, and this humanistic trend also appears among anti-creationists.
by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

Over the years, this child has had to endure new expressions while riding the Christian Life Trail. Members of the body of Christ  have been lacking in their commitment to the Word of God almost from the get-go, as the early epistles will attest. It seems that things are getting worse nowadays.

Some of the new expressions include woke and wokeness, critical race theory, and other anti-Christian humanistic philosophies that are found mostly on the political left and with liberal professing Christians. A large part of that is virtue signaling, which involves prideful "dig me!" trumpet sounding from those who seek the approval of men instead of proclaiming the truth and authority of Scripture. When these signals and philosophies come from professing Christians, they are even more disgusting than when leftists scream in the streets.

Notice how there has been a great deal of news lately about professing Christians who have apostatized such as Michael and Lisa Gungor, Marty Samson, Joshua Harris, and others. Further, in my experience, atheists are becoming angrier and more obstreperous. Leftists are becoming more and more extreme about upholding behaviors that God hates, and our religious liberty is under attack even in America. Seems to me that these things are connected.

All major Christian doctrines have threads leading back to Genesis. You can have a discussion with a professing atheist, and when it comes to showing how their mythologies of origins (including the Big Bang and universal common ancestor evolution), they really get on the prod. Sanctimonious owlhoots make a pretense at religion, put on the "Why can't we all just get along?" masque, then ride for the Darwin brand. They team up with atheists to ridicule biblical creationists. These alleged Christians who attack us also do a whole heap of virtue signaling: they reject Genesis for the applause of God's enemies, then brag about how they are more intelligent and spiritual. How perverse is that?



Phil Johnson presented a talk that was very informative and useful to the Bible-believing Christian. I'd be very much obliged if you'd spend just over half an hour hearing what he has to say. You can watch the video here, or listen to it on SoundCloud. If you click on the "More" button, there is an option to download the MP3. Also, here is his short article on the subject. 

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Confronting Atheistic Worldviews

When engaging your typical internet village atheist, the Christian apologist seldom encounters rational discussion. To use a common expression, I have found that these professing atheists are control freaks. Not only do they insist that their worldview is superior to ours because atheism, they are hostile to our presentations of reason.


Sometimes atheists wish to have rational discussions, preferring instead to justify their rebellion against God. Challenge their worldview and keep them on topic.
Credit: Pixabay / Arek Socha
Atheists and other anti-creationists attempt to justify their worldviews and morality by attacking God and simultaneously saying they "lack belief" in his existence and creation. Evidence for his existence is rejected based on their materialistic presuppositions, not because of flaws in our logic or the evidence. The use of presuppositional apologetics is something that really puts burrs under their saddles because we give critiques of their worldviews, expose flaws in their epistemology, point out logical fallacies, and especially because we stand on the authority of God's Word. 

Some get downright nasty when they are challenged. One creepy anti-creationist was defeated because he could not cogently respond to my challenges; his misrepresentations and failures can be seen here, and some examples of his logic failures are here. One of those was when he claimed that I was lying, so I posted that even if I was, how would that be wrong in his worldview? He was unable to answer.

Here is another example. This rancorous owlhoot refused to read the material and was harassing someone else who commented on a post. Like others, he demanded that I answer his objections, making me his errand boy:


Click for larger
Used under Fair Use provisions for educational purposes,
text enhanced because text on original screenshot was too faint
From my experience and learning, I see that people get on the prod when their excuses for rebellion against God and biblical authority are challenged. I've been subjected to bullying and manipulation before, so I was not having it. This guy, like others, needs to humble himself and repent.

In many discussions and "debates", atheists and anti-creationists are given answers and then jump around like they are fleeing a brush fire. Hitler's alleged Christianity is often invoked. The following article that I learned about from The Domain for Truth contains a written discussion between a Christian and an atheist. Note how the Christian uses presuppositional apologetics and calls out the atheist on his bad reasoning. It's very interesting and I hope it will be helpful to you. Note that I am not endorsing the entire site, I don't even know the identities of the authors. To read it, click on Got Mittens — I mean, "Gott mit uns".

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Separating Genesis from Science

Biblical creationists and other professing Christians freely admit that the Bible is not a science book. That is a good thing, because it would have to be constantly rewritten — especially regarding origins. There are people who wonder how we should handle the first eleven chapters of Genesis and hot it relates to science.

There are Christians who want to elevate science above the Bible and are frustrated that God does not tell us how he does miracles. Some wonder if the first chapters of Genesis are merely poetry.
Credit: RGBStock / Billy Frank Alexander
Some folks wonder if the first part of Genesis is poetry, a polemic, or something else. The Bible is history, and this fact has been verified many times. It also records miraculous events, which puts burrs under the saddles of materialists. God does not tell us how he did many things, but we trust God not only for the miracles of history, but Christians trust God for our salvation, the return of Jesus, and the restoration at the end of all things. Science does not warrant a superior position over God's Word even though it is a useful tool. 

A letter to CMI asks,
As someone who takes by faith that God created the universe and all that is in it, as Hebrews would instruct us, it would seem though that in the Genesis account, we are not provided with detail of the “how”. Is this not the scientific question? Seeking to understand more of the “how?
And as the scientific endeavour continues, and as we come alongside other scientists looking for answers, what if we indeed wade in along with them to uncover the “how”?
You can read the rest of the correspondence by clicking on "Is Genesis poetic? Doesn’t Genesis explain the 'why' and ‘science’ the 'how'?" Take note of the links in the responses as well as the related material afterward for more articles.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

The Global Flood and Extreme Prejudice

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

There are people who say that God was too severe with the Genesis Flood. Atheists use this as a way to set themselves up to condemn through their own self-righteous "morality" to judge God (that they claim doesn't exist anyway!) with a fallacious argument from outrage (see Job 40:8). Many professing Christians are not a whole heap better.


Unbelievers and some professing Christians alike say that the Genesis Flood was too severe. There is a severe lack of knowledge in who God is and who we are.
The Deluge / John Martin, 1834
Let's be direct. God's Judgment is not a pleasant subject, whether it is Hell, the Flood, or other forms. People get a mite uppity, forgetting that God is our Creator and is holy and just. His actions and character are not evil simply because we do not like what he says and does. When Adam sinned, he began blamestorming even though he was told that in the day he ate of the fruit, he would die. Literally, "dying you shall die", as the process began and his sin affected all of creation (Rom. 5:12, Rom. 8:22).

I wonder how many times Adam saw what was happening while he was working by the sweat of his brow and stepping on thorns. He saw one son murder another, and people in the world growing more and more corrupt. Indeed, it got to a point where man was only thinking about evil all the time (Gen. 6:5) except for righteous Noah (Gen. 6:9). There were probably decent folks during his lifetime, but by the time of the Flood, they were gone.

Here is a wander along a side trail for a moment. I have read a few novels based on the time of the Flood that were attempting to balance biblical faithfulness with artistic license. One had the last two children on Earth who were murdered by evil people, and an angel took them to heaven. It has been said that the more selfish and wicked a society becomes, they less they want to bear children. You can read remarks from politicians and celebrities who do not want to have children "because of climate change" or somesuch, and we see modern sacrifices to Molech in the guise of "reproductive rights", called abortion. Some countries are begging people to reproduce because they are facing a population crisis. After I wrote this post, I had to come back and add something. Dr. Mohler had some observations in the second and third parts of The Briefing that may support this (admittedly unusual) idea of no children at the time of the Flood.

Misotheists rail against God by essentially saying, "Oh, the poor children! Your God is bad according to my subjective judgment and limited knowledge!" Aside from impugning the integrity of our holy, just, and righteous God, they assume that he will not do what is right. But did you ever notice that there is no mention of children in the chapters on the Flood, nor in other references to it in Scripture? I will not add to Scripture, but that author may have been onto something, that maybe there were no children when the Flood happened. Just something to ponder, but it's not a hill I would die on.

We forget who we are and do not have a grasp of the holiness of God. He was under no obligation to spare anyone from the Flood. For that matter, he could have wiped out the human race from the get-go. I seem to recollect that there are verses about mercy and love that are why we still live. Some people wonder why Jesus is the only way of salvation We are the created beings and can only understand what almighty God has revealed about himself, you savvy?
Bible critics have long claimed the God of the Old Testament was unjust and mean. Some cite Noah’s Flood as an example: If God is really good, then why would He drown all those humans? The best answer to give depends on the attitude of the questioner.

Most who say God is unjust probably have little interest in the truth. Those with bad attitudes don’t listen well, and Christians shouldn’t waste time trying to defend our good God to people with closed hearts. But how can we be sure of another person’s attitude?
To read the rest, click on "Was the Global Flood Too Extreme?" You may also like to read "The Dirt on Theistic Evolution 2: Mabbul".



Thursday, August 1, 2019

Christians and the Battle with Sin

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

There are a couple of messages from Phil Johnson that I am recommending, but before that, a bit of a lament.

Many Christians are not serious about their spiritual lives. We may go to church on Sunday and listen to the sermon, maybe read the Bible once in a while, pray a bit, then forget about God most of the time. Others may get what can be called "tunnel vision" by focusing on favorite subjects. Those of us who are involved in apologetics need to learn theology as well as materials to defend the Bible, and biblical creationists have an even more specialized calling. We also must learn theology, but we can have our own tunnel vision.

I try to avoid that by listening to sermons and such while doing data entry work. This gives some variety and is edifying in other areas. There have been some pleasant surprises where I might think, "Well, I'm low on material, may as well listen to this", and been impacted by the message.

We must not focus on favorites to the exclusion of other areas. I am not saying that we cannot have some recreation in our reading, listening, and viewing, but the Christian life is not an easy ride on the buckboard through the countryside. We need consistent maintenance to grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord and should not shy away from things we need. Keep things in balance.


Many professing Christians shy away from serious teachings and then wonder why their spiritual life is in shambles. Here are two messages by Phil Johnson about dealing with sin and our thought lives.
Phil Johnson, image used by permission
There is someone I know who is galloping toward the cliff by listening to "Christian" teachers about giving angels commands and casting spirits out of things. (I told her that Basement Cat was sick and she told me to cast out the spirit since demons enter animals. No, she had an injury or arthritis and then had a bad reaction to the pain medicine. She's better now.) When I offered some solid biblical teachings including biblical creation, a subject she seemed to appreciate, she declined and continued with nutty stuff. 

Doing an online creation science ministry at The Question Evolution Project, I have occasion to glance at several profiles and see what people "like". From this and their posts, many professing Christians put a great deal of junk in their minds (see "What Are You Putting In Your Head?"), then wonder why their spiritual lives are lackluster. Every message cannot be a sip of sarsaparilla and we may have to dig in anyway. You may be pleasantly surprised by something; I did not expect to get as much helpful information as I did about postmodernism, for instance.

Who wants to talk about how to deal with sin when the latest superhero movie is available to discuss? The characters did not die on a cross for your sins and bodily rise from the dead. You may not be dealing with prominent sins in your life. Or maybe you are. These things begin in your thought life.

Mr. Johnson has a couple of message that I am recommending. First, "Create in Me a Clean Heart", using Psalm 51. Second, from Colossians 3:5-10 is "The Christian’s War with Sin". These are free to download or listen online. I hope you'll give them some time at your convenience. Now that I've heard the sermons and wrote up this here post, I can commence to doing creation science for a while.


Wednesday, July 31, 2019

When Professing Christians Attack Biblical Creationists

Sometimes Christians who have a view of apologetics and an old earth attack Christians who believe in recent creation and presuppositional apologetics, sometimes reasoning like atheists. Such things need to be addressed.
by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

One of the most difficult things about being a Christian is: other Christians. Believers can have their faith adversely affected or even set it aside and unbelievers use our treatment of each other as an excuse to ridicule the faith and justify their rebellion against God. Those verses on how believers are supposed to treat each other seem to have been excised from Bibles nowadays. It gets discouraging.

It gets mighty frustrating when we are working on helping the church with apologetics and biblical creation, then some tinhorn from a different camp comes along with his or her own ideas and flings horse apples at us in the guise of "reason" while pretending to do Jesus a big favor. We expect viperine tactics from atheists and other unbelievers, but it gets mighty smelly coming from professing Christians.

Southern Evangelical Seminary and Bible College has a doctrinal statement that seems reasonable to me, but some things are missing that people like me would like to know about. Adam Tucker and others make it clear that they are none too keen on biblical creation science. It may be from loyalty to one of the founders, Dr. Norman Geisler, who believed in an old earth. SES people think creation science and the age of the earth are not all that important, but they have had more than their share of attacking biblical creationists. It reminds me of atheopaths who exclaim, "I don't hate God because he doesn't exist!", then seek their identity in their professed unbelief and act like drunken outlaws shooting up the town at sunset.

Tucker has had Ken Ham in his sights more than once. Like Bill Nye, he acts like creation beliefs are unique to Ham despite the numerous like-minded organizations and individuals. Let me rein in a minute here and say that I have some disagreements with Ken Ham as well as other creationists (thinking people do that), but there is no reason to tear down individuals and the ministries they represent.


 
I was getting "prepped" for presuppositional apologetics through several creationist organizations, and it was brought home to me by Dr. Jason Lisle's The Ultimate Proof of Creation. From my observations and experiences, people hate presuppositional apologetics because they have been misinformed about the apologetic, and also because we have a high view of Scripture; the ever-changing whims of man-made science philosophies are not above the Word of God. 

Learning and promoting this apologetic has been very beneficial for me, but it is frustrating to see division in the church over not only apologetic methods (Norman Geisler supported classical apologetics and I understand that he was no friend of presuppositional apologetics), but which flavor of presup (bringing to my mind 1 Cor. 1:12-13). It is indeed unfortunate that Adam Tucker's attack on Ken Ham was two-pronged, going after presup and biblical creation.

Listen up, pilgrims. If you're going to saddle up and ride the Criticism Trail, don't be acting like an atheist, you savvy? Tucker's article reminded me of an atheist who said, "There is something wrong with all religions. Therefore, Christianity is also wrong and there is no God". Like atheists, Tucker used personal attacks, argued from ignorance, used straw man arguments, brought in a heapin' helpin' of prejudicial conjecture, and more.

Worse, he attacked a Christian personally while damning him with faint praise. Tucker does not believe biblical creation (young earth), nor does he understand presuppositional apologetics. Those difficulties do not stop him from writing uninformed polemics. He called Ken Ham's views "dangerous", but what is truly dangerous (and disgusting) is Tucker's malignant reasoning. Ironically, Tucker's logic was self-refuting — if he was consistent, he could not believe the Bible himself!

Here is an article that I learned about through The Domain for Truth. It contains an examination of  Adam Tucker's complaints and arguments that I hope you will find very useful.
It’s an article written by my past internet foil, Adam Tucker. He has provided us with a helpful treatise expaining the methodology behind how SES teaches apologetic engagement. He excellently contrasts a classical/Thomist approach to apologetics from a presuppositional/Bible-based one that I believe lends us insight for sharpening our apologetic focus.
To read it all, click on "Ken Ham vs. the SES Apologetic".

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Creation and Embarrassment

It has long seemed contradictory to me that there are Christians who ride for the defense of the Bible, but then shy away from the Genesis Flood, creation, and the young earth. It appears that those Christians are not fully signed on with the inerrancy of the Word, treating biblical authority like a buffet.

There are professing Christians who claim to believe the authority of the Bible, then deny recent creation and the Flood. The evidence supports our faith.
Credit: Morguefile / imelenchon (modified)
Am I doing them a disservice by questioning their commitment to the authority of the Bible they profess to believe and defend? I'll go a bit further and also say that I think that they have a problem with pride. We want the hands at the Darwin Ranch to think we're sorta smart after all, so we cede the age of the earth and the Flood to secular views. In an older article, I asked if we shut up about creation, would unbelievers leave us alone?

I disremember where i said it, but I attended a church that claimed to believe in recent creation. They did not want to be "labeled" and kept their belief tied up out back. I considered this stealth creation to be cowardly and dishonest.

One of the primary verses for apologists is 1 Peter 3:15, but many forget the first part about sanctifying Christ as Lord. Our ultimate authority is God's written Word, not the ever-changing whims of secular science interpretations. However, although we walk by faith, God expects us to use the minds that he has given us. We not only reason from the Scriptures, but we also have evidence to support our faith.

No, belief in evolution or an old earth isn't going to get you lassoed by Satan and dragged off into Perdition. Genesis is foundational for major Christian doctrines, however. Look at what is happening in the world today where marriage and sexuality are being defined away from what God originally established. People reject the authority of the Word and they become gods; this is a form of idolatry.

Those of us who are not ashamed of the Bible can take a stand, even if some subjects are unpopular. Although our faith is not grounded in scientific evidence, we do have reasons for our belief in recent creation and the Genesis Flood. We do not have any valid reason to compromise with worldly philosophies or to get the approval of others.
Does the age of the earth matter to your faith? The witnessing approach known as Evangelism Explosion was known for its diagnostic questions, so let me take that approach and ask a few diagnostic questions. Answer yes or no to the following:
    Question 1: Does the account of the creation of the universe as presented in Genesis depict literal events in a historical manner the way the gospels present the life of Jesus in a historical manner?

    Question 2: Is it important to stand up for a “literal” understanding of the creation of the universe as depicted in Genesis the way we stand up for a “literal” understanding of the death and resurrection of Jesus?

    Question 3:  Are you as proud and willing to stand for and defend the doctrine of creation  as depicted in Genesis – in 6 days – as you are to stand for and defend the resurrection of Jesus on the third day?

. . .

Many Christians think it sufficient simply to testify about Jesus and not concern themselves with “divisive” matters of origins. But is it sufficient? If you just preach Jesus, which Jesus would that be? . . .

You see if you can’t (or won’t) ground your Jesus in the scriptures which speak of the origins of all things –  the scriptures which  Jesus says testify about him (John 5.39) –  then people will break the 2nd commandment (not to make idols Ex 20.4) and create a Jesus in their own image to suit their own likings.  And they will reject the Jesus who scripture says created all things (John 1.3).  Along with that  rejection of Jesus as creator – is coupled the rejection of humans as male and female. And who are you to stop them? If you reject the clear teaching on origins, are they not right to claim they can likewise reject the teaching on origins? Further, if the teaching on origins  (which includes the genesis of genders) is inconsequential, is it not also inconsequential if they form, and make up their own genders?  If you cannot bring yourself to affirm, as did the early Jews,  the early church, early Jewish historians like Josephus, and Jesus himself (Mark 10.6) – the foundational teaching that at the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth in 6 days, and on the sixth day, created humans as male and female; if you you cannot honor and accept that yourself , then why would you have any expectation that an unbelieving generation would honor and accept God’s design for humans?
To read this article in its entirety, click on "Are young earth evidences needed to defend Christian Faith?"


Wednesday, July 17, 2019

A False Claim about the Evolution of Christianity

Since materialists believe that everything evolved, that also means religion itself evolved as well. A Darwinist believes that societies conjured up gods via natural selection when their population levels reached a million people, and these gods were ill-tempered.

Materialists believe that since everything else evolved, religion must have as well. One foolish speculation is not logical and reeks of desperation.
Background image courtesy of Why?Outreach
There are far too many fallacies in this foolish speculation to count. (One reason biblical creationists emphasize logic and critical thinking to so that people can learn to catch atheists and evolutionists in their bad reasoning and falsehoods.) There stories reek of desperation. Such a notion is also self-refuting, such as how love, compassion, forgiveness, and other good things are overlooked.
A typical theory on the ‘evolution of religion’ commits multiple logical blunders, not the least of which is ignoring evidence.
What’s wrong with this line of reasoning? ‘The Greeks reached a certain population size. At that population size, the idea of Zeus arose. Zeus was a vengeful god. Having a vengeful god gave the powerful a way to control the population. Conclusion: This explains the origin of religions.’
To laugh and also learn, read the rest by clicking on "Did Christianity Evolve from a ‘Vengeful God’ Myth?"


Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Compartmentalizing Creation

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen

When I began doing creation apologetics many centuries ago, I foolishly tried to divorce the Bible from scientific and logical evidence. My approach was only discussing theology when necessary, keeping scientific evidence for creation separate, arguing on neutral ground. Essentially, I was compartmentalizing.


We cannot separate science and theology, especially when discussing origins. It may seem valid on the surface, but such an approach will not work.
Floral compartments image credit: Unsplash / Michael Aleo
One big problem with the idea of neutral ground is that it is contrary to Scripture. If you ride up to the top of the hill and get the bigger picture, you'll also see that discussions of origins are metaphysical in nature. Really, they involve theology. 

Have you ever noticed that folks who want both sides presented in an unbiased view so people can "make up their own minds" seldom (if ever) accurately represent biblical creation science? They are biased toward materialism, therefore favoring atheistic interpretations of evidence.


via GIPHY

You want equal time, pilgrim? The secularists dominate science, so creation science ministries exist so we can present evidence that is suppressed. But they don't want you to hear our side, nor do they want to hear it themselves. Suppressing evidence is not science, nor is shouting down creationists and crying, "Liar!" while throwing outdated, irrelevant secularist links at us. You savvy? For an interesting discussion on accusations of creationists selectively rejecting science, see "Denouncing Science".

Both creationists and evolutionists have their starting points. Those of us with a high view of Scripture presuppose the truth of the Bible and creation, while evolutionists insist that their materialistic views are the only way to use science. Secularists fail to realize that their arbitrary view of science is based on metaphysical philosophies.

To take the compartmentalization concept a step further, I still have a tendency to do that. (Posts and articles on this site lean more toward theology than those at Piltdown Superman or Radaractive, but there is still some theology over there.) While I occasionally use this site to discuss various biblical topics and some may be considered side issues, I realized that I am compartmentalizing again.

My calling is to help equip Christians defend the faith regarding origins, so I tend to avoid certain side issues. (On more than one occasion, I have been surprised by an out-of-the-blue query at The Question Evolution Project on Fazebook where I had to reply, "I have no idea.") Like with politics, sometimes topics must necessarily overlap — especially when they involve core doctrines of the faith or matters that are extremely important to Christians. We cannot fully compartmentalize between science, the Bible, and certain doctrines.

The article linked below is specific for Creation Ministries International (after all, they can speak of their own ministry's experiences and policies), but I think you will see that it applies to related ministries as well. There are two feedback letters and their replies. To see it, click on "Should CMI ‘stick to the science’?"



Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Evangelism and the Genesis Flood

While professing Christians claim to believe the Bible, far too many put atheistic interpretations of modern science philosophies into a magisterial position. That is, Scripture is interpreted through the spectacles of long ages. This is backwards.


Some professing Christians shy away from or even deny the global Genesis Flood. They think it is a problem for evangelism. Such a view causes several problems.
Credit: RGBStock / rkirbycom
Some who compromise with secular views put down biblical creation with the falsehood that it hinders evangelism, so they ride for the old earth brand. (Did you ever notice that these folks usually deny the global Flood of Genesis in one way or another?) Bible believers teach the hard truth of sin, Judgment, repentance, and redemption.

People may shy away from the Flood because of old earth beliefs, but also because it describes judgment against the wicked people of the day. It is referred to in the Bible, and Peter even likened the Flood to the coming final Judgment (2 Peter 3:5-6). Discussing the Genesis Flood is actually helpful in evangelism.
Some Christians claim that insisting on a literal Genesis is a hindrance to evangelism. Since science has supposedly proved that the creation and Flood it describes weren’t real, historical events, they see a literal Genesis as an intellectual stumbling block to potential converts. However, this thinking is completely backward. It is the denial, not the affirmation, of Genesis that is damaging to effective evangelism.
To read the rest of this short article, click on "The Genesis Flood and Evangelism".



Thursday, June 27, 2019

Evolution and the Nature of God

You may have noticed that purveyors of atoms-to-astronomer evolution are very evangelistic, making efforts to destroy the faith of Bible believers. It would not surprise me if they eventually wore name badges and white shirts, rode bicycles and came to your door with the "good news" of Darwinism. Some try to tell us that God created through evolution.


Adding evolution to the Bible impugns the nature of God. Evolution is cruel and wasteful, which is no secret among its adherents.
Original image before modication: Freeimages /Mario Alberto Magallanes Trejo
Look at all the wonders and beauty around us. Mother Nature perfected everything through the magic of evolution, you know. That may sound good, but these sidewinders are deceitful. Way back in the thrilling days of yesteryear, I presented creation science talks in churches. One point I raised is that evolution is that evolution is wasteful and cruel, thought some wolves among us who profess to believe the Bible want us to embrace Darwin. Of course, atheists want to destroy our faith and have us to add evolution. No surprise there, it's who they are and what they do.

Although he believes in evolution, one devotee implores us to holler "Whoa!" to human evolution. Does someone in authority send out a memo, "Okay, all y'all stop evolving right now"? I thought evolution was an inexorable mystical force of materialism that supersedes God.

Evolution is a wasteful, cruel, inefficient method, and I am glad it is false. It impugns the nature of God and violates Scripture — indeed, it also violates the gospel message. Indeed, indicating that God "needs" evolution is insulting the Creator! Professing Christians who claim to believe the Bible need to cowboy up and learn what it really says.
A few sentences from this evolutionist’s plea should cure theologians of theistic evolution.

Under the shadow of the March of Progress icon, geneticist Alasdair Mackenzie shouts, “It’s time we stopped human evolution” — really? That should start a conversation—The Conversation. Isn’t evolution an engine of progress? Isn’t it God’s method of populating the Earth with endless things most beautiful? At its base, isn’t Mother Nature a benevolent, caring force?
I'd be much obliged if you'd read the rest of the article, "Evolutionist Cries, We Must Stop Human Evolution!"



Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Why Creation in the Image of God is Important

When atheists and evolutionists will say that harm to another person is wrong, they are tacitly rejecting their own worldviews and standing on the biblical worldview. According to them, man is just another evolved animal and is nothing special. No Bible-respecting person should add evolution to it.

The fact that we are created in God's image has important ramifications throughout the Bible. It also gives us hope, unlike the evolutionary worldview.
Credit: Pixabay / Gerd Altmann
We are created in the image of God. This is affirmed several times in Genesis and its importance is seen many times throughout the Bible. The atheistic worldview is incoherent and full of despair by its very nature. The biblical creationist understands, however, that we are image-bearers of God, and it is being renewed in us until the final, ultimate redemption and Judgment. We are not just animals, we are different and special.
Atheism views man as simply a material being like all other animals. In many ways, this is the predominant view of popular culture: man may have “evolutionary advantages” over animals in reason, communication, and some physical abilities but is not a spiritual or sacred being with a purpose and destiny higher than that of the animals.)
In this view, man lives and dies like the beast. Thus concentration camps, gulags, killing fields, and abortion clinics are all monuments to atheism.  
. . .  
God’s Word, in contrast, views man as the pinnacle of God’s handiwork. On the sixth day of Creation, as His final work, God created man as a physical and spiritual being. . . .
But what exactly is the image of God and what are the implications of man being made in His image? The answers and applications of such questions are essential to the Christian because they dictate human happiness or wretchedness—and often life and death. 
To read the entire article, click on "God’s Image—The Difference Maker".

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

The Days of Genesis One

Since we are bombarded at every turn with assertions of evolution and millions of years as a fact, many Christians try to reconcile the days of Creation with long periods of time. Expressions like, "Well I think the days are God's days, and we can't know how long they really are!" Some are sidewinders who know precisely what is going on and deliberately corrupt God's Word.

The days of creation are confusing to people who do not accept what the Bible actually says. Day means day. If God wanted us to think he meant long ages, there were other words he could have used.
Background image credit: freestocks.org / Joanna Malinowska
To be blunt, it doesn't matter what you or I think. The important thing is what God said in Scripture, and that too many professing Christians are uninformed about the Bible they claim to believe — especially at the foundation, the first chapter of Genesis. Some misquote 2 Peter 3:8, "One day is like a thousand years", which does not help much because it would make creation week six thousand years long, unhelpful for deep time. Also, the verse cancels this idea out, "...and a thousand years like one day". Read the context, people.

"Evening and morning, one day...evening and morning, the second (third, fourth, fifth, sixth) day." God defined yom (יוֹם) as day. A child or anyone else who has been uncorrupted by secularism can plainly see that day means literal day. To get millions or billions of years out of Genesis, you must perform eisegesis and put them into it first. For them, God cannot preserve his Word or make it understandable — or they are unwilling to believe it.



There are compromisers who adamantly refuse to let a day in Genesis 1 be an actual day. Biblical scholars (even those who do not believe the plain meaning of the text) know that yom means day. It is interesting that Bible-deniers circle the wagons to defend against logic and scholarship, trying to take word and force it to mean long ages. They ignorie the fact that if God had wanted us to think the creation days were long ages, there were other Hebrew words he could have used! (They also ignore Exodus 20:11 and 31:17, and essentially call Jesus, Paul, Peter and others erroneous or even liars.) Let's be honest about what the text actually says and perform serious exegesis.
Were the days of Creation Week of 24 hours duration or were they long periods of time? This article will discuss the Hebrew ‘time’ words which the author had available to him and what meaning he intended to convey by his choice of the specific words he used.
I hope you will read the rest of this important article and even save it for reference. To continue, click on "How long were the days of Genesis 1?" I also recommend "Genesis and the Character of God".

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Gopher Wood and Noah's Ark

Something that has puzzled readers of the sixth chapter of Genesis is the use of the term gopher wood. Footnotes often say that the "Hebrew term is uncertain", and Bible translations differ —

"I know what that means, Cowboy Bob! Noah commanded his sons, "Shem, you gopher water, Ham can gopher more pitch, and Japheth can gopher wood".


No.

Anyway, Bible translations differ. Many use the term gopher wood, and using the translations in my copy of theWord Bible Software, Coverdale (1535,) Geneva (1587), and Tyndale (1526) translated it as pine. The NIV translates it as cypress and adds the "uncertain" reference. The KJV, NKJV, NASB, HCSB, ESV, WEB all render the term as gopher wood.


Noah built the Ark out of gopher wood. What was it? The answer may not be what you would expect, and has biblical implications as well as science.
Credit: Wikimedia Commons / Cimerondagert (CC by-SA 4.0)
An excellent possibility is that God was not specifying a particular tree that has disappeared since then, but that Noah was to use hardwood. Getting into the Hebrew language, we see the root word that is used with brimstone, which is now called sulfur. This makes the plant material strong. The Ark, the wood, the pitch used to coat it all foreshadow the work of Jesus Christ. We can gain not only construction insight here, but also some theological principles!
Scientific facts can sometimes yield surprising biblical insight. For example, lignins make hardwood trees hard. They are a complex group of organic compounds found in the cell walls of plants that give structural rigidity to the plants’ overall growth and architecture. One type of plant lignin contains sulphur, while the other is sulphur-free. It’s the sulphur-bearing lignins that form the fundamental structural basis of all hardwood trees used for lumber products.

This botanical fact casts an interesting theological light on Genesis 6:14, where God instructs Noah to build a large ship. The Ark allowed him and his family (eight people total) and various representatives of the animal kingdom to survive the impending global Flood and repopulate the earth. Specifically, Noah is commanded, “Make yourself an ark of gopher wood.”
To read the rest of the article, click on "Scientific and Biblical Truth Converge for Gopher Wood".

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Trusting Bible Manuscripts

When pondering ancient texts, people wonder why we should trust biblical manuscripts. After all, we do not have the originals. We do have copies that have been passed down through time. Lots of them. In fact, there are far fewer copies of works by Plato, Caesar, and other ancient writers, and there is a tremendous gap between when they were written and the oldest manuscripts — and people trust their authenticity for some reason. What makes the Bible more reliable?


People wonder why we should trust the Bible since the manuscripts are so ancient. There are many reasons to be certain that God has preserved his Word.
Section of P-45 Greek papyrus manuscript of the Gospel of Luke via Wikimedia Commons
It has been suggested that since people tend to worship and idolize things, God has not made the originals available. That may also be the reason the body of Moses was buried by God (Deuteronomy 34:5–6). For that matter, I heard someone say that if a miracle happened on a particular spot, people would adore the spot instead of the one who performed the miracle. I'll allow that this is all speculation, but it makes sense.

Biblical manuscripts have been found that date way back yonder, and older copies have been discovered as well. When compared, there are no significant differences, and nothing has ever contradicted major Christian doctrines. Jewish scribes took their work very seriously, and it wasn't just a matter of corralling several manuscripts and picking those based on personal preference, nor was it like a supervisor tossing a copy on a desk and telling the scribe, "Here, copy this. And try not to spill your soy latte on it this time!" It was a sacred duty. Also note that Christians do not attempt to hide known variations. That is why you will see footnotes in your Bibles.

Those ancient scrolls are mighty fragile. One was recently "read" through imaging technology. The scroll is essentially the same as what is available today.

There is an area of scholarship called textual criticism where manuscripts are evaluated. (This is not to be confused with higher criticism, which utilizes circular reasoning based on secularist presuppositions.) It has been shown that God has indeed preserved his Word.
Why does my reference Bible have notes at the bottom of the page that say things like “Some manuscripts add . . .” or “some early manuscripts omit . . .”?
This is not a minor issue. Headed by Bart Ehrman, a growing movement claims that we cannot be sure what the original Bible said.
First off, there is no other ancient literature so well attested by so many manuscripts (handwritten copies of the original text) over such a length of time, as the Christian’s Bible. But since we don’t have the originals, written by Isaiah or Paul for example, would the many copies made over the years introduce thousands of mistakes, as Erhman and others believe?
Let’s check it out so you know what to say next time someone makes this claim.
To read the rest or download the audio, click on "Trusting the Text". The author is Brian H. Edwards, and you may be interested in some of his related material, here.



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